Monday, November 21, 2011

Documenting Raymond's World

Raymond left behind many toolboxes, satchels, and suitcases filled with an incredible assortment of items (brochures, pictures, toys, VHS tapes, etc.) that document his life like nothing else can. We're opening a few now and scanning in the items for a digital archive. This is the first satchel we're documenting: a Samsonite piece of luggage filled with these scanned items (and a lot more we'll get to). These objects describe Raymond and his life in ways words just can't. (PS: we are currently on Drawing # 710 in our journey of digitally archiving all the drawings Raymond left behind. We'll keep you posted.)

Raymond carried around a variety of tool-boxes, briefcases, suitcases, and satchels.   We have several of them in the archive, filled with items he either took with him on his travels and/or "souvenirs" he picked up on his way.  Above is the first satchel we're archiving.  Note the little cut-out window.  This is something Raymond customized on all the cases he carried.  Some people say he have have done this to let bad spirits out -- or maybe it's just so he could see what was inside without having to open the case.

The open case.

Priority # 1 (outside of drawing) for Raymond was getting a job.  Here's a note he may have written to someone at CG&E (or to himself about CG&E employment possibilities).  It's been slipped inside a Ziplock baggie.

Backside of the CG&E memo.

Notes to himself on scrap pieces of paper.

Random flyer.  All his tool-boxes and cases are stuffed with random information like this -- stuff he grabbed from different places as he went about his travels and artmaking.

Raymond was a major volunteer.  He did a lot with Habitat for Humanity, as well as this event at Notre Dame.

Raymond was an avid Polaroidist.  He customized many of his Polaroids of demolition and construction sites by cutting away the white cardboard framing.

Part of Raymond's Construction/Clown drag.

Who knows? 

Raymond wrote this on the back of his pay-stub from Goodwill.

A flyer from one of his favorite places.  He often would go to King and other wrecking companies and the secretaries would tell him where the next demolition site would be, and then he would be off, catching a bus to the site with his art supplies.

Un-customized Polaroids.

Goes without saying.  Lots of these kinds of publications are in the cases, as well as a lot of circus and carnival-inspired coloring books.

Dream Tool-bag.

Raymond wrote this on the back on an envelope he received from Goodwill.  Don't know why.  Inside the envelope is a monthly Goodwill Newsletter to donors.

Raymond's birth certificate.